10 Proven Ways to Increase Conversion Rates with an Online Form
Keeping an interesting online presence is great to generate traffic but it’s only half-way up the hill towards conversion for any product or service sales. On the other hand, right now is probably the most strategic timing to increase conversion rates with a fail-proof online form embedded in a website.
E-commerce sales have more than tripled in this last decade in the United States, representing 16% out of total retail sales in 2019. Online shopping worldwide has grown even more significantly by a jaw-dropping 600%. This year’s pandemic accelerated this trend even faster, as more and more people have adopted online shopping.
According to the U.S. Commerce Department, 30% of all American adults shop online at least once a month. In fact, last year alone, consumers spent US$ 601.75 billion online, a 14.9% increase from 2018.
Whether you’re a big company or a small business, a marketing agency, an independent professional, or even a non-profit organization, people are now more inclined to hear your online offer. This is the time to snatch qualified visitors browsing your website and turn them into customers/clients. Time to seize every opportunity of getting a submission clicked on!
Why an Online Form is key to increase Conversion Rates
There are countless tactics that you should tick off a list for increasing conversion rates on your website. Most are so basic, that you should have done it already if you haven’t yet. We’re talking about: improving your site design; speeding up the loading time; creating a seamless mobile version; adding testimonials and reviews; offering a discount or a money-back guarantee, to name a few.
All of these efforts will eventually culminate in the most key strategy to increase conversion rates: a fully responsive online form.
An online form is how you step up from a high traffic-generating site to a high lead-generating site. The goal is to get people to fill out their information into your online form, so you develop a database for sales prospecting.
The database gathered can be also used for marketing campaigns, newsletters, event invitations, or any regular communication that builds your brand awareness.
The most important element in your site to secure leads is also the easiest to create.
With the help of an intuitive online form builder like MightyForms you can quickly and easily create and embed your form to your website. Create a new form from scratch or from a template. Here are the main benefits of having an online form:
- Strong and clear Call-to-Action element displayed
- Full customization
- Standardized process that gathers accurate data
- Form can be easily adapted to any device (mobile, desktop or tablet)
- Security ensured for data exchange
- Automation of workflow
- Easy tracking of form abandonment
- Efficient data management for Customer Relationship Management (CRM)
- Avoid spam and hacking attempts
- Notifications allow for quick follow up and call back
- Seamless integrations to other platforms that increase productivity
How to increase conversion rates with an online form
Recent research found out that 50% of marketers say inbound marketing strategies, such as an online form, are their primary source of leads. If an online form is a key strategy to convert visitors into leads, then we can certainly make it even more powerful. Any form is better than no form, for sure, but there are smart approaches and proven methods to make it even more efficient. Let’s get to it:
1. Looks Do Matter
You might have put every effort (and budget) into getting a design for your website that stands out, thinking that ought to impress visitors. But the way your online form looks matters just the same or more.
Don’t thrill your visitors during the whole website experience only to let them down when it comes to the form. A beautiful and customized design will instill a sense of professionalism and attention to detail that reflects on your product or service.
When you create your online form with a form builder like MightyForms, you can play around with its design. Optimize how your form looks by easily editing colors, fonts, size, and position of fields. You can also upload a background picture or your logo, for instance.
If you’re not sure of how your form should look, then trust one of MightyForms tested templates. Building your form from a template will ensure proper design according to your industry or purpose.
2. Keep It Lean
The objective of an online form is to retrieve basic contact information and consent. From that point on, you can always get more information later with a callback, a survey, or a personal scheduled visit. But at first, you should avoid too many questions and keep your form lean with only essential fields.
The reason for keeping your form short is to not scare people off with a list of fields they need to fill out. This will feel more like a chore and eventually people will give it up. In general, a five fields form length yields the highest conversion rates.
To find out if your form is too long, MightyForms offers Real-Time Data Capture technology that allows you to track exactly where people have abandoned a form. By analyzing this tracking data, you can not only optimize your form length but also, recover the abandoned lead using any information that was actually filled out.
3. Keep It Optional
Keeping your form short and straight to the point will compel people to fill it out, but don’t make all fields mandatory. People like the freedom to choose and being in control of what information is being given.
Most people understand that a name and an email are reasonable information to give out in a form but might feel that a phone number or their age is too invasive. Using MightyForms editor, you can easily mark which fields are mandatory and which can be optional.
In fact, by actually stating a field as optional, it increases the chances of people deciding to fill it out. It’s all reverse psychology playing mind tricks. Some people will fill out their phone number for example, if led to feel that they were the ones who decided to do so.
4. Clear Value Proposition
An online form should feel like an invitation to something exciting and not cause any suspicion. Visitors might have landed on your website by an online search and once they go through your sales funnel, they must see a clear value proposition.
Right off your headline, it should be transparent why an online form is being presented and what will people get by filling it out and submitting it. Your copy should be as descriptive as it can be to first establish trust, then, to engage people into action.
You can also reassure people that they made the right decision submitting the form by sending a success message as soon as they hit the submit button. MightyForms' autoresponder settings allow you to personalize an automatic message to let them know that their answers were successfully received. Take a step further and redirect your leads to another site afterward so they can find out more information and see what’s next.
5. Display Trustworthiness
An online form might be a virtual interaction, yet somehow, visitors must perceive real trustworthiness. People must feel they are in a safe environment in order to exchange data and that their privacy will be protected. In a new survey, 29% of respondents cited security concerns for abandoning an online form.
When you ask for personal information to be filled out, not only you have to state why you are asking for it, as we mentioned previously, but also, reiterate that the information will be only used for the agreed purpose. Especially if you’re asking for credit card information for the payment process.
You don’t have to overdo it either or you’ll sound suspicious. Your privacy statement should sound authentic and not just another marketing gimmick. As an added precaution, when you’re using a form builder like MightyForms, you can tell your visitors that all data input is protected with end-to-end SSL encryption.
6. Make It Conversational
Technology absolutely makes our lives easier, but we miss the human touch, don’t we? Even though we know we are “talking” to a machine, we appreciate it when it emulates a human interaction.
That human interaction tone can be achieved in your online form by setting it up as a conversational or multi-step form, which results in an incredible 53% conversion rate increase. You can present fields in your form in steps and even personalize each step with different colors, to show conversation progression.
When creating your form with MightyForms, you can make your conversational forms even smarter by applying the Logic Rules settings. It will condition the next questions to be presented based on the answers filled by visitors. This neat detail will make your form flow in a dynamic way, avoiding non-applicable questions that might annoy your prospects.
7. Strong CTA Button
The very pièce de résistance within an online form for increasing conversion rates is the call-to-action (CTA) button. That sought-after click is what makes up for all of your efforts, so it makes sense to apply almost scientific methodology in order to fail-proof it.
Do not take the CTA button design lightly, every detail matters when it comes to convincing people to click on it. You should relentlessly pursue the best color, copy, position, and size of a CTA button for your type of business and outcome expected.
The CTA button should be easily noticeable without being annoying nor pushy. The calling words should encourage action in an unusual way that reinforces the value proposition. Instead of saying “buy now”, phrase it as “enjoy it now”, for instance. “Secure your spot” instead of “sign up now”, as another example.
Keep in mind that 90% of visitors who reported reading headlines also read the CTA copy. That’s how much of a big deal it is! When it comes to color, red is the best performing color for a CTA button, followed by orange and green.
8. Place It Right
Location, location, location. The placement for your online form will determine the conversion rate as well. It will be a shame to come up with a high performing responsive form only to make visitors scroll down the screen to find it.
If you want to turn visitors into leads, then absolutely place your online form above the fold. Avoid any other distracting elements in the online form page that might compete for attention. Also, consider that most people will first check out your website on a cell phone small screen, so the online form must be engaging right away.
9. A/B Test for Winning Performance
As you must have realized by now, there’s no winning formula for increasing conversion rates with an online form. Even if you double-check every tactic, there’s no way of knowing which approach will work best for your type of business. That’s why we strongly recommend that you run a split test.
Basically, you come up with the best two versions for your online form and test which one, A or B, yields more responses. Switch things up and put colors, copy, lengths, and overall visuals to the test.
The A/B testing method is used by 56% of marketers to verify performance. But you don’t even need marketing agency expertise to run split tests. For instance, MightyForms form builder offers native integration with Google Tag Manager, which allows you to create Google Optimize A/B tests. So you can easily measure and compare your form versions performance.
10. Sense of Urgency
This is an old trick from the sales best practices book, but it works for increasing conversion rates with online forms too. Whether you’re selling a tangible product or service, you can always try to appeal to emotion as a last resort by instilling a sense of urgency.
In order to optimize conversion rates, you can include as the final argument in your online form the number of remaining stock of your product (“Order now, only 3 left”) or remaining availability (“Sign up now, only 2 spots left”), for example, or even display time left for limited deals.
Urgency triggers our psychological system to act fast. People can be influenced and submit a form simply because they were led to feel that they will miss an opportunity or a great deal. But keep in mind that your offer must be indeed useful, important or valuable, otherwise urgency won’t be convincing.
There you have it. Ten proven ways to increase conversion rates with online forms that get results. I bet you look at your online form differently from now on. No longer as a set of blank fields waiting for input, but rather, a powerful lead-generation tool!